Last week, a 2,500-sq ft banner was towed on an aircraft which hovered over M Chinnaswammy Stadium. The banner, made out of a flag, carried a picture of the USB device, along with a trailing letter banner reading, ‘Speed you can carry’. The aircraft circled the stadium for one-and-a-half hours, during the IPL match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Delhi Daredevils. On the next day, the aircraft covered high-density areas in the city, including MG Road, UB City, malls and tech parks, for another one-and-a-half hours.
A campaign on Radio Mirchi and Radio One ran parallel to the aerial activity, where listeners were asked to spot something unusual in the sky and call back the radio stations. The callers won gifts from Tata Photon Plus.
The two-day activity was executed by Atin Promotions and Advertising and Chandigarh-based Sky Ads, which provided the aircraft and the banner. It took 10-15 days to get the requisite permissions for the activity, from Air Traffic Control and several local government bodies.
Discussing some instances when brands go for aerial advertising, Atin Gupta, partner, Atin Promotions and Advertising says, “Aerial advertising is usually done during a product launch, or when a brand makes addition to its existing line of products. The client has recently introduced a special rate plan for Photon Plus, and IPL worked as the right backdrop for the activity.”
The costs involved are steep — banner towing fees start at approximately Rs 2 lakh per hour. Besides, the advertiser bears the cost of the banner itself, which is imported from the US.
Sanjeev Khera, regional head – South and circle operating officer – Karnataka Circle, Tata Teleservices, says in an official communiqué, “The concept of aerial advertising works well for our brand, as it is the best way to capture the imagination of our target audience. It was a strategic decision to use this opportunity to enhance the visibility of Tata Photon Plus, as millions of people in the city were present at the stadium and in and around malls.”
“In the competitive marketplace today, where brands are struggling for brand recall and market share, marketers and advertisers need to scout for newer ways of brand and image building,” he adds.
So far, brands such as Tata Docomo, Frankfinn, the air hostess training institute and Surya Group of Institutes have used aerial advertising. According to sources, Uninor is another brand which will jump on the bandwagon soon. Though a new media in India, aerial advertising is widely used in the US, Canada, Britain, Australia, Russia, Thailand and other countries.